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Have Corporate Blogs Really Caught On Yet?

We see report after report after report of the acceptance or the non-acceptance of corporate blogging as a marketing tool. Often the measurement is done based on the activities of the Fortune 50 or 500 which I find a little puzzling since they are likely to have the most difficult environment to truly blog based on rules and regulations that keep public companies from themselves regarding the financial side of the ledger.

eMarketer, however, is taking another stab at looking at this part of the online marketing world and sees the following from data that apparently goes beyond just the big boys. (Note – The full report is from eMarketer and is for sale on their site and MP receives no compensation from eMarketer).

Honestly, that is still a pretty low percentage in my estimation considering the potential value of a blog (if done correctly, kept up and truly utilized which is what keeps most away from the practice to begin with). Even with the prediction of 43% of companies utilizing the technique by 2012 it seems low but that’s just me.

What else did they uncover about blogs? The usual funny stuff that shows just how lame traditional media can be when it cries foul around their online counterparts / competition then turns around and relies on it for information for their ‘profession’.

Here is a chart showing how journalists use the online space (I think the correlation to the blogging info above is that they use blogs as sources but that’s just a guess). There is quite a dependency on all things online for these folks including ones, like Wikipedia, that are notorious for their content being factual vs. fictional (although maybe the truth is setting in since their dependence is down from last year).

So is corporate blogging set to become more commonplace? Will there be a time when over 50% of the companies are using blogs to their benefit? Is the importance of corporate blogs overplayed? Should companies at least be blogging so they can feed journalists the information they want to see published since they are increasingly being used for sources anyway?

You tell us. You’re the experts after all. Thanks.

  • http://www.adrianswinscoe.com/blog/ Adrian Swinscoe

    Hi Frank,
    Not sure I agree with that figure seems a little high. Do you know what emarketer means by a corporate blog? What size of company are they referring to and in what geography?

    Sorry to bombard you with Qs, 34% in 2010 seems a little high. Don’t you think?

    Adrian

    • http://www.frankthinking.com Frank Reed

      It looks like they went beyond the usual Fortune 500 crowd and included more businesses representing a variety of sizes. I agree that the number seems high. Of course, having a corporate blog and having an EFFECTIVE corporate blog may be the big difference as well. Some may say they have a blog but when updated once a month it is not doing them any good. In fact, it could be causing more harm.

      As with any research there are plenty of holes that lead to speculation. Woody Allen nailed it when he said “94.5% of all statistics are made up” (hat tip to Jeff Hoyer of UBL) which only serves to remind us that we need to use extreme caution around this kind of data. Since the Internet space is evolving so rapidly and it takes time to do research there are always going to be gaps.

      Phew. Did that help or did I just add to the noise?

  • http://pr.typepad.com$ john cass

    I think its only natural to look at the fortune 500 to determine the percentage of companies blogging, those companies are often leaders in their industry and people want to know what the leaders are doing. Plus in some industries beyond dev shops, the large tech companies were the innovators in corp blogging. Think microsoft, sun, and ibm. That doesn’t diminish the role of smb’s in the field.

    Have you also seen umass dartmouth longitudinal study on inc 500? The rates there were similar to emarketer. While their fortune 500 study put adoption at 22%

    I do think more companies will start blogging, if only that many agencies recommend using the blogging platforms for a website!

    But the real question I think, is not have many companies have a blog but rather, how many are writing content on a regular basis and engaging the community? That takes more effort. Charlene li’s engagement website does a good job of illustrating that factor.